A few days back there were fears of a slowdown in the BPO business. Recession, Barack Obama effect and quite a few other things were the reason behind this. There was an all-round lull and rumor-mongers were out there on the streets saying that the BPO-boom is over.
And there happens these two deals and these rumor-mongers are back into their shells. All these talks about recession and the BPO slowdown are over now. The largest BPO in India, Genpact bagged a five year contract from, The Hyatt Corporation chain, covering its North American hotels for its accounting transactions.
Harmit Singh, CFO, Global Hyatt Corporation said: ‘‘We have a contract with Genpact for handling the accounting transaction services for some of our North American portfolio, which would be expanded moving forward.’’ From an initial nine hotels, Genpact’s Hyderabad unit will cover another six hotels next year and then 10 hotels by March 2010. The Hyatt group has 118 properties in North America
Also at the same time, another major BPO in India, Infosys, was awarded a five-year, multi-million dollar contract for information technology work by the British drug maker, AstraZeneca. Under the agreement, Infosys will deliver application maintenance services to AstraZeneca’s global operations in areas including manufacturing, supply chain, finance, and human resources
There need not be a conclusion to this post because any reader would now be confident of the fact that "BPOs are here to stay and make it big".
The key to success in any organization is working together as a team. It is same with a BPO as well. But what does it mean to work in a team?
The geese has a certain way of flying. When they fly they form a particular formation. There is a definite reason why they do that. Understanding this concept teaches us what “Team work” is all about.
Fact 1: As each goose flaps its wings it creates an “uplift” for the birds that follow. By flying in a “V” formation, the whole flock adds 71% greater flying range than if each bird flew alone.
Lesson we can learn : People who share a common direction and sense of community can get where they are going quicker and easier because they are traveling on the thrust of one another.
Fact 2: When a goose falls out of formation, it suddenly feels the drag and resistance of flying alone. It quickly moves back into formation to take advantage of the lifting power of the bird immediately in front of it.
Lesson we can learn: If we have as much sense as a goose, we stay in formation with those headed where we want to go. We are willing to accept their help and give our help to others.
Fact 3: When the lead goose tires, it rotates back into formation and another goose flies to the point position.
Lesson we can learn: It pays to take turns doing the hard tasks and sharing leadership. As with geese, people are interdependent on each others skills, capabilities and unique arrangements of gifts, talents or resources.
Fact 4: The geese flying in formation honk to encourage those up front to keep up their speed.
Lesson we can learn: We need to make sure our honking is encouraging. In groups where there is encouragement, the production is much greater. The power of encouragement (to stand by one’s heart or core values and encourage the heart and core of others) is the quality of honking we seek.
Fact 5: When a goose gets sick, wounded or shot down, two geese drop out of formation and follow it to help and protect it. They stay with it until it dies or is able to fly again. Then, they launch out with another formation or catch up with the flock.
Lesson we can learn: If we have as much sense as geese, we will stand by each other in difficult times as well as when we are strong.
~Based on the work by Milton Olson
What can we learn from this?
- We need to assist one another.
- It is our duty to take turn to lead.
- Learn the importance of encouraging one another in the right direction.
- It is necessary to stand by one another in difficult times.
Photograph courtesy Toivo Lagerweij
One of my team members came to me a couple of days back with a query. He wanted a suggestion from me. His sister was working in a company who was reeling under the economic crisis and was going through a cost-cutting spree. There were cost reduction initiatives everywhere. Incentives that were offered earlier were no more being given. Salary appraisals were also being put on hold. Recognitions were not coming, just because recognition involved costs. No employee was happy with just a pat on his back. It had to be accompanied with some kind of reward which meant monetary considerations. Giving the kind of situation that the organization was going through, employees were bound to be unhappy. Add to this the lack of communication from the organization’s leaders to its employee, and the matters were worse.
Now this employee was looking for a change very desperately. She had spent close to 3 years in the organization and was in for a promotion when all this happened. So growth was what she was looking for. She got an opportunity with another company which was into the financial domain and there were news in the leading dailies that they were cutting jobs and that the financial situation was bad. The organization was offering a good enough package to this employee and a position jump as well.
She was caught in a dilemma now. Should she opt for the change or, not?
There are quite a few employees caught in this dilemma. They are scared of the financial situation and at the same time are so dissatisfied that they desperately want to change. So what is the correct decision at this point in time.
The decision would depend upon a comparative evaluation. One should keep in mind that there is always a risk at changing a job during tough financial conditions. Any organization that goes on an employee reduction initiative would first look to lay-off the ones who have just been hired. They would certainly not want to let go off their seasoned employees unless they are absolute non-contributors and non-performers. So the risk remains. But at the same time, if your organization is a sinking ship and if you have a better opportunity it is always better to grab it and jump out of the sinking ship. So consider the following and then take a call.
- Which organization is financially strong – your current organization or, the prospective one? – If both are non-comparisons, then evaluate the following.
- Has your organization in the past offered growth and appreciable pay-hikes?
- Has your organization taken care of its employees in the past?
- Is there a definite communication from your senior leader’s to the employees.
- Are you okay to be without a job in the worst case scenario for about a couple of months?
- Even if your organization is taking extreme steps of cost-reduction right now, how strong is it financially? Is it cash-rich? Does it have enough liquidity reserves?
The last point would be a difficult to gather information, but with internet and Google, you should be able to do so. Answer all of the above questions and you would be able to find an answer.